Lindsey Stirling and the Fine Art of Showmanship

Last Saturday, Lindsey Stirling served as mistress of ceremonies for Arizona’s Distinguished Young Women awards.  (“It’s not a pageant.  It’s a scholarship program.”)  It was a return of sorts for Lindsey.  For on that very stage at Mountain View High School, in Mesa, that Lindsey herself was crowned as Arizona’s Junior Miss exactly 10 years ago.  It was also at that same event that she experimented with a new concept in 2005. “I’d like to see if I can play the violin and dance at the same time.”  Well, the rest is history.  Granted, to see that ‘05 pageant performance and compare it to a 2015 Lindsey Stirling extravaganza is a real contrast.  (She plays a lot better and she dances a LOT more.)  Still at the time it was a new frontier — and it blew the audiences and the judges away.  She had found something phenomenal that she has run with and made completely her own.

But last Saturday night, ten years later, when I saw her take that podium as well as that stage, I realized something breathtaking.  Lindsey is not only a talented and exceptional performer – she is also a consummate entertainer who is as comfortable hob-nobbing conversationally with a crowded auditorium as she is sharing her art with a packed amphitheater – and she is capable of doing both interchangeably.  There are a lot of great performers, and not quite as many great entertainers.  But Lindsey Stirling is both and more.  She is a master at the art of showmanship – and that is rare.  It is a discipline that comes naturally to a select few, in a complex blend of talent, a love of the stage, affection for the fans, and pure charisma.  Not many have it — but Lindsey does.  And it is that indefinable quality that has drawn enthusiasts to her from six continents – the mysterious something that is moving a world to fall in love with a dancing violinist.


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4 thoughts on “Lindsey Stirling and the Fine Art of Showmanship

  1. Ash Elford

    You said it perfectly Mr. Stirling. For Lindsey to have such a wonderful opportunity to return to the exact same stage to enlighten and inspire youth in her main home state is a true blessing. No doubt that her talents shine through her heart and her everlasting aura of positivity are some of a million reasons why I look up to her proudly. Every time I see Lindsey up on the stage I am mesmerized by the energy and enthusiasm she portrays, everywhere from the high kicks and twirling to the intimacy of her conversations with us. She truly is a precious gem and pours her heart into her passions, both musically and pursuing other goals.

    On top of all of that performing and public speaking at Mountain View High School, it is always so heartwarming to see that Lindsey was also able to visit back home for her birthday and to have some quality time with you and the family, as well as sharing her birthday experience with us on her live streaming app, Periscope. It’s these little blessings that really make each and every one of us so blessed to have her as a part of our lives. Hope you had a wonderful time catching up with Lindsey and enjoying all the birthday festivities!

    Always keeping you all in my thoughts and prayers, the example the Stirling family shares with world is very unique and inspiring in so many ways.

    Sincerely, Ash

    Also on a side note following up on our conversation about Persona Non Grata: I just recently received it in the mail and looking forward to embark on the adventure Paladin holds, will be undoubtedly a great novel and will write a full review when I finish reading 🙂

  2. Darwin

    Brigham Young stated: “If I were placed on a cannibal island and given the task of civilizing its people, I should straightway build a theater for the purpose.” (Brigham Young as quoted in Mormon Arts, ed. Loren F. Wheelwright and Lael J. Woobury [Provo, Brigham Young University Press, 1972]p.43.)

    And why would that be helpful?

    The poet Percy Bysshe Shelley explained that “art penetrates the veil of familiarity of things” in order that we might finally see clearly and meaningfully.

    Gospel Vision of the Arts July 1977 Ensign

    QUOTE 1: “In our world, there have risen brilliant stars in drama, music, literature, sculpture, painting, science, and all the graces. For long years I have had a vision of members of the Church greatly increasing their already strong positions of excellence till the eyes of all the world will be upon us.

    President John Taylor so prophesied, as he emphasized his words with this directive:

    “You mark my words, and write them down and see if they do not come to pass.

    “You will see the day that Zion will be far ahead of the outside world in everything pertaining to learning of every kind as we are today in regard to religious matters.

    “God expects Zion to become the praise and glory of the whole earth, so that kings hearing of her fame will come and gaze upon her glory. …” (Sermon, September 20, 1857; see The Messenger, July 1953.)”

    Lindsey is fulfilling prophecy.

    QUOTE 2: “It has been said that many of the great artists were perverts or moral degenerates. In spite of their immorality they became great and celebrated artists. What could be the result if discovery were made of equal talent in men who were clean and free from the vices, and thus entitled to revelations?”

    And may I hastily add, also WOMEN of equal talent who are clean and free from vices and thus entitled to revelations.

    QUOTE 3: “Take a Nicodemus and put Joseph Smith’s spirit in him, and what do you have? Take a da Vinci or a Michelangelo or a Shakespeare and give him a total knowledge of the plan of salvation of God and personal revelation and cleanse him, and then take a look at the statues he will carve and the murals he will paint and the masterpieces he will produce. Take a Handel with his purposeful effort, his superb talent, his earnest desire to properly depict the story, and give him inward vision of the whole true story and revelation, and what a master you have!”

    And Niccolo Paganini, the Italian violinist (1782–1840)! Why cannot we discover, train, and present many Paganinis and other such great artists?

    Brigham Young said, “Every accomplishment, every polished grace, every useful attainment in mathematics, music, and in all sciences and art belong to the Saints.”

    “Every useful attainment in music”. Huh….that sounds like somebody I have heard of…a hardcore pixie/dancing violinist-type of some renown.

    And she does it all with great and competent family backing…a loving and devoted family that not only gives her love and support but also respite and protection and defense

    Like the much ado about nothing awards show dress. What an over-the-top over reaction to a simple black and tan dress! That covered her completely!

    Thank-goodness for the eloquent championing by her father.

    Brother Stirling, you and the rest of the family are fulfilling prophecy right along with Lindsey.

  3. Darwin

    Sunday Morning session of October 2015 General Conference, the talk by President Russell M. Nelson…

    Here is some more prophecy that Lindsey is fulfilling. Including an additional one (beyond the Gospel Vision of the Arts) by President Spencer W. Kimball.


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